16 October 2006

little quickie

just a quick update today. my apologies for the extended absence, but i have had a hellacious last couple of months. lots of changes at work have kept me very busy, plus what with the plans for getting married this saturday & all. FYI, don't ever let anyone lie to you: attempting to plan a wee little wedding can get just a stressful as planning a big one. at least with a big one, you can just throw a hunka cash at a wedding planner and make them do the legwork. oi vey. the wedding industry is a racket, and i will have no part of their nefarious plans to punish anyone considering betrothment with years worth of debt. where else can you expect a cake that would normally cost $100 to suddenly cost $300, and that's WITH the free top layer as a "gift" to the couple. yeah, some gift. how about a $200 discount...now THAT's a gift! =]

anyway, i digress. the point is, i've been busy, y'all. (did i mention that i'm making my dress, or that i just started it last night? clearly i'm insane) and that means not much time for knitting and definitely no time for blogging, though i've been happily reading everyone elses. i did manage to finish one project that was neither for me nor from my stash. i took a picture of it, like to see it? here it is:

the conwy sock by nancy bush, from knitting on the road

knit with one skein of lorna's laces shepherd sock in "irving park." and i say one skein loosely, because this thing has a 9 inch leg and lots of ease, and i STILL had at least a quarter of a skein left over.

close-up of the twining stitch pattern

the best thing about this sock? it's a sample for dunwoody yarn, so i only had to knit one. no SSS! yay! it's also my very first actually finished sock, so i am very proud of it. i have started a huge number of socks, but never made it all the way to completion for a number of reasons, the biggest being that the cuffs were always too tight. i started this baby with a german twisted cast-on for elasticity and i adore it! now to just work through the 12-more-pairs-worth of other sock yarn i have...yikes!

so that's it for today. i still have a couple finished objects that i never got around to sharing, and i promise there will be a return to more regular bloggings post-honeymoon. we're taking a road trip along the gulf coast next week, planning to make it as far as we can (possibly even to texas) before we turn around and head back home. FUN! =] later taters!

30 August 2006

for seriously!

no really! my apologies for the lack of teh blogging lately. every time i think i'm going to have time to take photos of my recent FO's & WIP's, reality interrupts. rest assured knitting, stash-busting and a wee bit of stash-enhancing is still occuring on a regular basis. when it comes to make a decision between knitting or blogging, knitting wins every time! =]

whoah, i got all for serious down there on that last post for a minute. guess what? no one else is actually talking about it or even really cares. who knew?!

lastly (for this post anyway), a couple weeks ago, julie of dunwoody yarn and i had the pleasure of driving out to gilliland's heritage alpacas in hoschton, georgia to visit and learn a little more about alpacas and fiber farming. omGOSH we had so much fun!! angela and jim were so very gracious and seemed to really enjoy having visitors that they could lure into the wonderful realm of alpaca farming. we met all of the alpacas, and also met their new llama, who they were working with since she had gone down due to heat stroke a week earlier. we watched them put her into a sling that rasies her up, helping her stand up for the necessary 8 hours a day. you could tell that these guys really love their animals. and if you think alpaca fiber is soft in yarn, you should pet an alpaca! SO! SOFT! they are also very shy and prefer to approach you, so after trying and failing to approach them slowly enough to let us pet them, we turned our backs to them so that we could chat more with angie about their traits and all the things that go into the business. every time we would look back behind us, they'd be sneaking up on us, trying to nibble on our clothes or catch a whiff. it was so cute! before we left for the day, angela took us to her office where she showed us the yarn she had spun from her flock. i picked up a ball of 210 yds of fingering weight that had a bit of blue-grey dye scattered here and there on an otherwise natural cream color, and a skein of worted natural cream. both of them are destined to become the softest hats on the planet.

more soon, with photos....no, really!

08 August 2006

we interrupt your regularly scheduled blogcast to bring you...

the fight everyone is talking about.

if you haven't heard, cascade and kfi have been duking it out over the supposed actual cashmere content of one yarn darling, debbie bliss cashmerino. a couple weeks ago, i had a chance to view both of the following letters directly from the companies in question.

the letters reposted below have been copied from the thread at knittersreview.com (an excellent thread on the subject until it derails a bit towards the end)

so originally...i posted the text of the letters here, before i realised the whopping amount of page space they took up. my biggest blogging goal right now is not to lull any potential regular readers into a torpor from which the only escape is closing and never re-visiting my page. that would make me sad. you should go read the thread at knittersreview.com linked above. i'll wait...you won't miss anything, i promise!

The whole thing is just very...bizarre. Cascade of course started it by essentially slandering DB Cashmerino without solid proof of lack of cashmere content. But then KFI upped the ante by doing a bit of passive-aggresive name calling in the process of [rightfully] defending themselves. I think KFI could have done without all of the "jealousy" commentary, personally.

Who's right? Who's wrong? Does it matter? Is the industry really getting this saturated and competitive that yarn companies are resorting to tactics previously reserved for big corporate bullies? The whole thing is just a little off-putting on both sides, though I'll be the first to admit that when I bought my first ball of cashmerino a few weeks ago, I actually woke up in the middle of the night wanting to cuddle it, it was so soft. Since my yarn bag was next to my side of the bed, I ended up sneaking my hand into the bag like some surreptitious yarn pervert, stroking it until I fell asleep. Is that bad?

03 August 2006

don't give up on me yet!

i'm still here...been living and knitting. work has been hell the last couple weeks, and my down time has been spent knitting & getting things done around the house rather than blogging. BUT! i have an fo and a new project i'm really excited to show you...more next post once i have photos.

i also discovered that i must be a bit of a masochist when it comes to this yarn thing. when i could have been blogging, i have instead spent the last couple of weeks torturing myself looking at hand-dyed, hand-spun, silk, cashmere, lace, wool, patterns, books, bags...so many beautiful things that i can't buy right now. i'm managing to keep myself under control, but there's one thing, just one...

i covet....oh, how i covet

i think in order to keep myself sane, i'm going to have to buy a couple skeins tomorrow. i had heard of socks that rock, of course, but i had never actually seen the colors. oh dutch canyon, highway 30, flourite, seal rock and scaponia, how i covet you all. i must have you!

more later, with knitting photo-y goodness!

25 July 2006

ooh, look!

an FO!

now, this one was finished but un-blocked when i decided to take on this little endeavor, which is why it isn't in the stash photo or on the sidebar. and its such a timely FO, what with the country just easing out of the grip of the biggest heatwave we've felt in a while, and august not yet come to pass here in the sauna of the south. no matter, i love it, and wore it around the house last night for an hour.

(ignore the smiling idiot head)
scarf 2

mistake rib scarf - cast-on 23
yarn: 2 skeins rio de la plata handspun & handpainted merino wool
size US 10.5 needles
specs: 7 inches wide and 94! inches long

close-up of the stitch pattern & truer colors
scarf 1

it's home for the next few weeks at dunwoody yarn, helping to sell more rio
scarf 5

i LOVE LOVE LOVE the colors of this yarn, and i think the stitch pattern, plus alternating skeins every two rows (one hank had more green, the other more yellow) helped disperse the colors more. for some reason, it made me think of tomatoes. weird. i'm so happy with this FO, it was exactly what i envisioned - super-wide, super-long & super simple.


22 July 2006

eye candy friday saturday

in the spirit of purly whites eye candy friday, even though it's saturday, i'm going to share with you some of my favorite photos i've taken lately. i figure i'm not the only one up early on a saturday to walk the dog, now sitting around with my coffee looking to see if anyone's updated their blogs. (oh crap, did that rhyme?)

they're holga b/w, so not much "candy" per se, but i love these photos i took a few weeks ago at oakland cemetery


empty eyes

stone daisies

next time i'll share a little more color. i'm off to shoot a dale chihuly exhibit, then babysit a photography gallery...which means 4 whole hours of knitting!

20 July 2006

my resolve is already getting shaky...

but it's not yarn...well, not exactly.

would buying a drop spindle and roving count as cheating? i know the answer is yes, i think i just needed to see it in writing to realize that it's not really a good idea.

sorry for the short post. it's been so hot and i've been working very long hours. i've also been working on a new website for a friend. it's knitting-related, and as soon as it's in good shape i'll share it with all of you! =]

eta: i'm just curious...what's with everyone deciding to open their own yarn store? i mean, i get dying and selling your own yarn line. and i really do get that we all love yarn and would love for it to be our day job. but whatever happened to supporting the heck out of your LYS? it just seems like "opening a yarn store" is the Aught's (or at least 2006's) version of "starting your own web design business" or "opening a computer store" of the 90's. it's kinda weird.

of course, i'm still working on the retirement dream i've had ever since i was 15 and visited england for the first time: my own sheep farm. no yarn stores for me...i want fleecy fuzzy faces to love and care for. =]


18 July 2006

the hard truth

alrighty, let's see what we have here. last post, i showed you my stash as of about 1 year ago (not as long as i thought...not sure whether that's good or bad). that was then:


and this is now:

please click on the photo and view it at flickr with tags to see the details

a few things to note:

  • pictured is approximately 110 average-length skeins of yarn in various weights. i'll work out the meterage this weekend, since i'm curious to know. i'd also like to work out the approximate investment. hard facts help.
  • not pictured now but still very much in the stash are the 16 (16!) hanks of naturgaarn, 6 skeins of bernat, and 6 skeins of tlc amore from the top of the older photo. i just didn't have the room or the time to drag them out and add them in, but they took up a nice chunk of real estate in the last photo, along with the bag (also not pictured) and the yarns directly below and to the left of it...those projects were finished. yay! but...
  • in the first photo is the top half of the bed, with everything nicely spaced. in the second is the entire surface of my queen-size bed viewed from atop a 3-foot stool. my head, and therefore the camera, was against the ceiling. most of the yarns are stacked so that they would all fit.

since this meager task took all night, i'm going to leave the individual cataloging for the weekend. i'm beat and a little speechless. i had actually forgotten about some of those yarns in only a year. boy-howdy, i have a lot of work ahead of me, but at least i have some really nice yarn to work with.

thank you for your comments! =]

ps - also not pictured is the hank of sunshine yarns superwash sock in waterfall that i bought last week before i made this commitment. dangit! her yarns are so lovely, and it was an anniversary goodie sale, and i just couldn't seem to help myself! but i'd rather feel good about treating myself to those pretty colors, rather than guilty.

17 July 2006

let's begin, shall we?

hi, my name is amy, and i am an impulsive yarn-a-holic.

(the first step is admitting you have a problem.)

so let's get to the root of the problem. i'm a bit of a fiber/color nut. that in itself isn't the problem. the real problem, the root, is that i am an impulse/emotional shopper. this really affects just about every aspect of my purchasing habits, not just yarn, but lately, the yarn stash has become an excellent visual barometer of just how much potential this particular habit has. let's explore.

about a year and a half ago, i came across a thread on the fantastically lovely craftster forums titled yarnaholic seeking support group. thinking "what a great idea, even though i don't have TOO much of a stash..." i took the following photo:

(clicking the photo will take you to my flickr photo with tags)

not terrible, right? it's gotten much, much worse since then. and sadly, most of the projects the above yarns were intended for have not been finished.

so the question is...how did we get to this point? well, i have never been a responsible shopper or money-saver. i have long admitted that i have a serious problem with impulse-buying and emotional shopping, the later being when i shop to make myself feel better even though i should be saving. believe it or not, the first step is NOT admitting you have a problem, at least not if you aren't doing anything about it. and my impulse shopping tendencies don't limit themselves to yarn; rather, it changes from week to week based on my current mood: one week it will be yarn, another it will be patterns and fabric, yet another it might be film for my various cameras, books, cd's, exercise equipment i don't use, etc. etc. etc.

so now, right now, i am declaring a 6 month moratorium on unneccesary purchases. if i don't NEED it, i don't buy it. this will not be a loose definition of "need" either. if i can get by just fine without whatever it is i'm jonesing for, i can't have it. (this obviously includes yarn, right?) in the meantime, i am going to catalog my entire current stash here on this blog, and before i can purchase any more yarn, i first need to make it through at least 80% of my current stash.

truly, you have no idea. i have a ridiculous stash that would probably make any fiber nut with limited funds weep, and then beat me senseless for letting it all sit in my cedar chest untouched.

i'm counting on you all (as in all of you that haven't found my blog yet, but hopefully will soon) to provide a little support and tough love. i don't care how badly i want koigu, or noro, or some pretty silk for knit and tonic's sizzle tank. i can't have it. not until i work my way through most of the "gotta have it" stuff i have already.

stay tuned...